Design inspiration by Alana Blanchard and Anna Amejko (swimwear designer)
I`m going to be completely honest with you: I am not a huge fan of mainstream surf brands or their current marketing and advertising material so I was pretty skeptical when I first saw the clip for Rip Curl`s new Mirage Bikini Collection. For years, seeing models in adverts who obviously don`t surf parading around with boards just hasn`t inspired me to buy product (and this isn`t isolated to any one brand).
Recently, however, we had the opportunity to talk story with fine Aussie lasses, Fran and Clare from Cos We Can, who are kicking ass with their film production, photography and stories, and who happened to work on the video clips/photoshoot showcasing the Mirage collection. When they got in touch with me, I wanted to hear their personal reviews of the product so in their own words, here is what they experienced….
Being part of the photography shoot in Fiji I had a chance to test out the bikinis & they are amazing. As a water photographer I’m always on the lookout for a pair of bikinis that I don’t even have to think about while swimming around in the impact zone. You only want to be worrying about getting that shot – not if your bikinis are going to fall off. They are super comfy and fit similar to a sports bra, so perfect also for other activities like bikram yoga, running & swimming laps. Alana had a lot of involvement in the design of the bikinis. Rip Curl do an intensive design camp every year which Alana is a part of.
I did test them out. Surfed in some the other day and they were AMAZING!!! The best thing is that you can buy them as separates. I’m a size 12 top and 10 bottom so that works SO WELL.
And when asked if any of the tops were suitable for larger bust sizes – something which is currently not being addressed very well for active female waterwomen with bigger boobs – unless you know a brand and would like to enlighten us, here are their thoughts (in no particular order):
I can’t 100% vouch they are suitable for a bigger bust, (being barely a B myself) although Ally (the Mexican model) was about a D, and they gave her a lot of support and were extremely flattering. But then again she was gorgeous so probably could have made anything look good.
I’m a double D – and I actually surf in a real bra (with a rashy) because I can’t concentrate on what I’m doing unless my boobs are sorted… hahaha weird but true.
In the interests of product research and in pursuing functional and stylish surfwear for our Salt Gypsy audience, we tentatively ventured into a local Rip Curl store to see for ourselves the Mirage collection. Although I haven`t personally surftested them yet, I was genuinely impressed with the quality of the fabric and the cuts of both bottoms and tops. As Fran mentions, the whole collection is available as separates which is perfect for our curvalicious and individual body shapes. And you know what…with retail prices at $40 – $90 AUD, they ain`t looking too bad….
My overall impression?
It`s good to see big brands finally catching up to their smaller, start up counterparts and what the market has been demanding: functional and stylish surf-specific swimwear. But surf brands – big and small: please showcase women actually surfing in your product more in your marketing.
The Mirage Bikini Features:
Xtra Life Lycra
X-racerback tops (no ties around neck)
Thankyou Fran and Clare for lending your personal surftest reviews and challenging my skeptic`s opinion! And if any of our readers have tried and tested a Mirage bikini, we`d love to hear from you here.